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Actress Maxine Peake to bring Morley sporting legend to stage

Beryl Burton

Beryl Burton

 

Renowned actress Maxine Peake is to bring the life of Morley cycling heroine Beryl Burton to the stage in a new play.

Maxine, who has starred in TV shows Shameless, Silks and The Village, has written the play, Beryl, which she will also star in when it comes to the West Yorkshire Playhouse next summer.

The staging is being timed to coincide with the Tour de France’s Grand Depart from Leeds.

The actress, who is no stranger to the Playhouse stage having starred in a number of productions there, initially wrote a radio play aboutBeryl Burton, which aired on Radio 4 in 2012.

The West Yorkshire Playhouse has now commissioned the stage version to celebrate Yorkshire and Leeds’s role in the Tour de France.

It will tell the story of possibly Morley’s most succesful sporting figure - a woman who became a giant of her sport but remains relatively unknown outside of it.

Five times world champion, 13 times national champion, twice road-racing world champion and 12 times national champion, Beryl’s accolades include time trials, former world record holder, former British record holder, numerous sports awards and MBE and OBE.

She has been always held in great esteem in her home town and a number of permanent tributes have been paid to her since her death in 1996, including a plaque in Morley Town Hall and the mural which adorns the wall next to Beryl Burton Gardens in the town centre.

Maxine will be taking on the role of Beryl. as she did in the radio version.

Beryl will be staged at the West Yorkshire Playhouse from June 30-July 19. Tickets are on sale now by calling 0113 213770 or online at wyp.org.uk.

 

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